Found February 14, 2013 on
Blue Seat Blogs:
The Rangers win in Boston marked the night we’ve been talking about since the Rangers opened the season with three losses in four games. Following those games, fans were ready to can Torts, trade Gabby and torch everything Glen’s built over the last few years. Premature panic compelled Dave to write an article titled, “One game does not make a season. I pleaded with people to have patience and suggested we needed to wait until at least the 12 game mark before we could analyze what kind of team we had. Well, tonight is game 12 and I think we’re all ready for an evaluation.
Here’s some initial thoughts…
Rick Nash is better than advertised
Never mind the 10 points in 12 games, or the fact he leads all Rangers in offense, what Nash brings to the table goes beyond the score sheet. He not only draws coverage, opening up space for his linemates, but he also consistently beats the coverage on his own.
Gomez used to skate right into blueline traps and cough the puck up over and over again. Nash skates through traps, around them, hell even under them – that assist to Hags the other night was Nashty nasty. I haven’t seen a player this dynamic with the puck, since Jagr circa 2006. Rick Nash is the real deal.
Our offense finally has some depth/balance
Having depth is something we’ve talked about a lot on this site. Depth means you have balanced lines and balanced lines creates mismatches for opposition checkers. With Stepan and Hagelin coming along offensively, plus the addition of Powe and Miller to the lineup, the Rangers now have a bottom six that can skate, chip in on offense, and most importantly – log important minutes.
Torts also employs an aggressive forechecking system, one that requires puck pursuit and playing in the dirty areas of the ice. It is so crucial this type of system has four forward lines that comes at you in waves.
Marc Staal is back to his old self
Sure Staal came back during last year’s Winter Classic, but we all know he didn’t come back in the best form. This season we are seeing the Marc Staal of old. He’s not just making great defensive plays and clearing the slot, he’s also much more confident with the puck and on the rush.
The Rangers have built this team from the net out. If our defense can continue to put up points, it makes defending against us that much harder if we can score from anywhere in the OZ.
Room for Improvement
The past few games Torts has been able to trust everyone in all situations. Stralman proved to be a great add and Gilroy has been better in his own end zone than Bickel and Eminger. With that said, should we lose any of these guys to injury, there really isn’t anyone who can step in and log 10+ minutes a night. McIlrath is at least a year away and no one else on the farm is close to ready for The Show. A trade almost seems inevitable.
The Rangers went deep into the playoffs last season with a subpar powerplay. A year earlier the Bruins won the Cup after being 20th in the league in PP conversion. The Penguins held the same rank in 08-09. The Rangers can succeed with an average PP, but they’ll be behind the eight ball if the advantage remains in the basement.
I think the PP can be improved, but it will not be a top 10 powerplay until MDZ matures into an elite powerplay quarterback. It doesn’t matter who the coach is or what you diagram. If you can’t walk the line and distribute/blast from the point, your PP will never be great.
Everyone at this level knows what they have to do. Executing is a different story. But look around the league. How many PPs are successful year in and year out? Not many. Every year it changes save a few teams. What do those few teams have in common? Answer – elite PP QBs. In my opinion, it’s the final piece to the puzzle.
BEST OF MAXIM
Tweet The Boston-New York cross-sports rivalry was featured in the NHL on Tuesday as the Bruins took on the Rangers, two Eastern Conference contenders. Midway through the first period, Rangers forward Rick Nash set the tone for the game by delivering this beautiful assist to Carl Hagelin: Wow. If Nash had just deked and jived [...]
I am Nash. HEAR ME ROAR
It’s Musings day. I’m in Germany as you read this on a game day, so enjoy. Unfortunately the Islanders game is the first game I’ll not have caught live this year to any extent but I’m sure you’ll all cope without me.
The Rangers win in Boston; if that finishes 3-0 then half of Ranger nation will be booking time off to attend the Cup parade. It...
Despite only being about a quarter of a way into this condensed season, the Bruins and Rangers met for the third and final time this season on Tuesday night in another matchup of Eastern Conference powerhouse squads.
The Rangers got on the board first 10:37 into the opening period when the Rangers new All-Star forward Rick Nash put forth an outstanding individual effort to create...
This is the type of play that made the New York Rangers want Rick Nash so badly. He singlehandedly made this goal possible with his display of sheer athleticism and awesome hands. All Carl Hagelin had to do was put the puck in the empty net with all of the Boston Bruins defenseman pre-occupied with Nash. If the Rangers can get their act together in time for the playoffs, they...
The Rick Nash trade might eventually define Scott Howsonâs tenure as GM of the Columbus Blue Jackets but it might not prove to be his biggest failure on the job. In the summer of 2011 with Howson doing everything he could to assemble a squad capable of contending for a playoff spot, the Jackets added Jeff Carter to add some goal scoring punch and signed James Wisniewski to beef...
Boston MA. The New York Rangers came in tonight on their second trip to the Garden and their third meeting with the Bruins over the first month of the shortened NHL season.
The Rangers were the first to strike as Rick Nash drove through the zone drawing three Bruins and Tuukka. Nash fell to the ground but was able to pass the puck to Carl Hagelin who finished it behind an out of...
Vote for the Coverage Play of the Week and enter to win a $100 gift certificate to the Pro Shop at TD Garden. First read the official rules, then completely fill out the entry form for your chance to win.
The past week was a very eventful week of hockey. Here's what you missed.------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Rick Nash made one of the best passes I have ever seen against the Boston Bruins on Tuesday. With the Rangers down by a goal, Nash deked around a Bruins defenseman, fell...
2012-2013 Records: Islanders (4-7-1), Rangers (7-5-0)
NYR Leading Scorer: Rick Nash (3-7-10)
NYI Leading Scorer: John Tavares (7-8-15)
NYR Goaltender: Henrik Lundqvist (11 GP, 2.48 GAA, .912 SV%)
NYI Goaltender: Evgeni Nabokov (10 GP, 3.00 GAA, .897 SV%)
New York Rangers Tickets.
Marian Gaborik-Brad Richards-Ryan Callahan
Carl Hagelin-Derek Stepan-Rick Nash...
Rick Nash was everywhere for the Rangers on Tuesday.
Before he fooled Tuukka Rask to score one of New York’s two shootout goals, Nash had an assist that would make NBA facilitator Steve Nash proud. The former Columbus Blue Jacket weaved his way through three Bruins defenders before dishing the puck to teammate Carl Hagelin while sliding on his chest, setting Hagelin up for the...
COLUMBUS, Ohio — One playoff appearance in more than five seasons wasn’t good enough for Scott Howson to keep his job as Columbus Blue Jackets general manager.
Howson was fired Tuesday night by John Davidson, the club’s director of hockey operations. Since his hiring last summer, Davidson, who rebuilt the St. Louis Blues, has become the man with the most power in the front...
Tonight’s action featured some great NHL GIFs of a great re-direct goal, a nasty assist, an insane coach, and more.
Brayden Schenn of the Philadelphia Flyers opened the scoring against the Winnipeg Jets with a re-direct tip of the puck. The Flyers went on to win the game vs. the Jets by a final score of 3-2.
Rick Nash of the New York Rangers with a beautiful assist, dangling through...
The Rangers blew a 3-0 lead, but Ryan Callahan saved a victory in the shootout
The Rangers choked away a 3-0 lead, but were still able to pick up their second win over Boston this season. New York dominated for much of the game, but foolishly sat back in the third period and the Bruins sealed a comeback with 2 goals in the final 1:31. An extremely entertaining overtime period followed...
During the second period of the Rangers 5-1 win against the Lightning John Tortorella reunited the Dan Girardi/Marc Staal defensive pairing. Here explained why to Andrew Gross of the Bergen Record...
“They played together for so long prior to [McDonagh] coming on to the scene. Last night I just felt we were struggling a little bit with our pairs so I switched it up. They just...